It’s time to heal fes­ter­ing po­lice wounds!

The Star (St. Lucia) - - COMMENT - By Rankin Kop­per

Rick Wayne’s ar­ti­cle en­ti­tled Po­lice Moles

Tar­geted! which fea­tured in the 17 Oc­to­ber 2015 edi­tion of this news­pa­per hope­fully raised goose bumps all over Saint Lu­cia. Nor­mally threats against the po­lice are made by crim­i­nals who nat­u­rally see the po­lice as ob­sta­cles in their way, and are of­ten ig­nored.

In the re­cently re­ported in­stance, the threat came from within the po­lice force it­self. As for the con­duit, none other than the act­ing po­lice com­mis­sioner. As if that were not se­ri­ous enough, the com­mis­sioner warned one of the tar­gets that his safety could not be guar­an­teed be­cause some of his col­leagues are con­vinced he had been rat­ting on them to mem­bers of the gov­ern­ment. There were ref­er­ences to IMPACS and the so-called task force at the cen­ter of it. Es­pe­cially dis­turb­ing is that Rick Wayne’s story, pub­lished in the STAR and dis­cussed by the author on TV, has not been chal­lenged by any of the par­ties men­tioned. Not by the com­mis­sioner or by the prime min­is­ter. Not even by the na­tional se­cu­rity min­is­ter.

It may well be that the gen­eral pub­lic con­sid­ered the story far­fetched. When the host of TALK asked Dr. and Sen­a­tor Stephen King to com­ment on the of­fi­cial si­lence, he said it was pos­si­ble the gov­ern­ment was for­mu­lat­ing an ap­pro­pri­ate re­sponse. There are those who say mem­bers of the so-called task force wouldn’t dare carry out their threat now that it has been ex­posed. We have such short mem­o­ries. We are talk­ing about trained men and women with guns, who be­long to the same or­ga­ni­za­tion and of­ten find them­selves work­ing side by side on the same team. Now con­sider the state of mind of th­ese of­fi­cers with no idea who among them is a spy for politi­cians. What if one of them has spe­cial rea­son to worry?

In such a sit­u­a­tion, as in oth­ers, ac­ci­dents can hap­pen. And have hap­pened. I as­sure you, this is not just an­other “story,” to quote Rick Wayne quot­ing the po­lice com­mis­sioner. In 1979, Po­lice Su­per­in­ten­dent Alphonse was shot at a late-night bar in Cas­tries. He died a short time af­ter­ward in hospi­tal. The mur­der was pinned on a young es­caped con­vict named Terry James, but many know bet­ter, the su­per­in­ten­dent’s sur­vivors in­cluded. What most or­di­nary cit­i­zens may not re­al­ize is that many of us in uni­form, in Alphonse’s time and now, have good rea­son to be­lieve the of­fi­cer’s death was or­ches­trated by fel­low po­lice of­fi­cers, for po­lit­i­cal and other rea­sons.

At the time of Alphonse’s death the post of com­mis­sioner, as well as other se­nior po­si­tions, was up for grabs. As, by the way, is the case to­day. The bru­tal truth is that many po­lice of­fi­cers con­tinue to be­lieve the Alphonse killing was car­ried out either by a fel­low po­lice of­fi­cer di­rectly, or at his in­struc­tion, and pinned on a well-known crim­i­nal. It is no ru­mor, how­ever, that the killer bul­let matched a gun handed over to a mem­ber of the day’s gov­ern­ment dur­ing a pe­riod of amnesty. The amaz­ing de­tails, for those whose mem­o­ries need re­fresh­ing, can be read in is­sues of the STAR (1979-80). Even more shock­ing de­tails can be read in Rick Wayne’s Fool­ish

Vir­gins, where the author men­tions names.

There have also been cases of po­lice of­fi­cers be­ing shot or in­jured by their own in cir­cum­stances com­monly known as “friendly fire.” At least two names im­me­di­ately spring to mind: the late of­fi­cer Ju­lian Jn Jacques was par­a­lyzed and forced to spend his re­main­ing years in a wheelchair. Jones Avec­tor (also de­ceased) spent the later part of his years with a po­lice bul­let in his body.

Both shoot­ings were deemed ac­ci­dents. But some of us know an ac­ci­dent from a tar­geted shoot­ing. There­fore, the thought of cops gun­ning down cops is by no means fan­ci­ful and ought not to be brushed aside, as it seems has hap­pened de­spite the act­ing po­lice com­mis­sioner’s warn­ing. In my view the act­ing com­mis­sioner must’ve been es­pe­cially con­cerned. Why else would he have di­vulged as much as he re­port­edly did? He may even have placed his own life in jeop­ardy. But just in case some will say Rick Wayne should have kept the com­mis­sioner’s word se­cret, let me in­form them that other jour­nal­ists know of the plot the com­mis­sioner re­ferred to. It is my view they have said noth­ing for po­lit­i­cal rea­sons only. The act­ing com­mis­sioner clearly be­lieves the force could ex­plode in a blood bath if cer­tain ac­tion is not taken by the author­i­ties, and quickly.

I now wish to ad­dress more di­rectly the fo­cus of this ar­ti­cle: the re­port of planted moles in the po­lice force. By all the act­ing com­mis­sioner said, many of his of­fi­cers be­lieve the moles carry tales to the min­is­ter of home af­fairs and the prime min­is­ter. Some be­lieve the al­leged spies ac­tu­ally rat­ted on their col­leagues dur­ing the IMPACS in­ves­ti­ga­tion in their own self­ish in­ter­est. Writ­ing from an in­sider’s po­si­tion, I will re­fer to the moles as spies sell­ing out their col­leagues for re­ward. They have no re­gard for truth. Ev­ery­one is para­noid.

There can be no doubt that the re­ported con­ver­sa­tion be­tween the act­ing com­mis­sioner and a threat­ened spy ac­tu­ally took place. The com­mis­sioner ob­vi­ously al­ready had his own sus­pi­cions; his meet­ing with so-called des­per­ate mem­bers of the so­called task force only con­firmed what he al­ready knew: the ex­is­tence of po­lit­i­cal spies on the force.

The con­fi­dence with which Rick Wayne de­liv­ered his story to his read­ers and view­ers of TALK con­firms for me that the com­mis­sioner’s meet­ing with the al­legedly threat­ened sus­pected mole was clan­des­tinely recorded. In much the same way hun­dreds of phone con­ver­sa­tions among pri­vate cit­i­zens are recorded and handed over to gov­ern­ment politi­cians. The spies in uni­form re­port ev­ery word spo­ken in po­lice fo­rums, so­cial gath­er­ings and other meet­ings of the po­lice. This is among the rea­sons most of­fi­cers keep their mouths shut, even when they need to speak up in the best in­ter­ests of self and or­ga­ni­za­tion.

On Satur­day 31 Oc­to­ber 2015, the prime min­is­ter ad­dressed the an­nual RSLPF gazette of­fi­cers re­treat at Palm Haven Ho­tel. Dur­ing his an­gry de­liv­ery he re­called the tone of some of the ques­tions put to him dur­ing his now fa­mous re­cent north-south get-to­gether with the po­lice. He also took the op­por­tu­nity to re­mind the Palm Haven gath­er­ing that he knows every­thing about the po­lice and would not be wor­thy of his of­fice if he didn’t. He might just as well have named his spies among us.

I hope that the act­ing com­mis­sioner took spe­cial note, keep­ing in mind his ear­lier con­ver­sa­tion with a sus­pected po­lit­i­cal spy. I re­call that when the force was un­der the lead­er­ship of Act­ing Com­mis­sioner John Broughton po­lice of­fi­cers were ac­cused by the then op­po­si­tion leader of tak­ing money in red en­velopes from the vis­it­ing pres­i­dent of Tai­wan. Mr. Broughton was fi­nally or­dered to have his of­fi­cers re­turn the money. While I won’t get into whether the of­fi­cers in ques­tion had done some­thing wrong (I could ar­gue that they did not) I pre­fer to ask how Kenny An­thony found out about the red en­velopes—if not his po­lice moles planted in his time as prime min­is­ter.

Prime min­is­ter Kenny An­thony (left) had a pretty good idea what would be the fall-out from his dec

Also pic­tured, Er­rol Alexan­der.

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